The Federal Government has received a request from the government of Guninea-Bissau seeking assistance in rice production so as to enable its food security and nutrition improvement.
This was disclosed in Abuja as the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Alhaji Muhammad Sabo Nanono, received the Guinean Ambassador to Nigeria, Henrique Adriano Da Silva, alongside the Country Representative of Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO), Suffyan Koroma.
The request comes at the heels of the innovative successes recorded in the production of Nigerian rice by Nigerian Farmers which can be tied to the equipping of farmers with improved rice seedlings, farm inputs and providing anchor borrowing facilities by the current Administration.
Alhaji Nanono emphasized that in the meantime, the Ministry will assist Guinea-Bissau in terms of personnel training /technical assistance in rice value chain. However, the Minister was quick to note that establishing bilateral agreements between the two Governments were absolutely necessary. He also promised to meet with the Guinean Minister of Agriculture to commence this initiative.
Ambassador Da Silva had earlier stated that rice value chain was the core of Guinean agriculture which saw Guinea exporting rice to other countries like Angola, Mozambique and Portugal among others.
The Ambassador further remarked that as at today, 90% of rice consumed in the country was imported which calls for the government to seek assistance from the Nigerian government.
On the other hand, the Country Representative of Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO), His Excellency Suffyan Koroma presented a document that chronicles activities of FAO in Nigeria from 2017 to present.